Schoolgirl ecstasy death: Lecturer could face manslaughter charge
A UNIVERSITY lecturer could face charges of gross negligence manslaughter over the death of schoolgirl Isobel Jones-Reilly, who died after taking ecstasy at his house.
Brian Dodgeon, 61, was away from the London home he shared with partner Angela Hadjipateras when an unsupervised party was held where teenagers found his Class A drugs.
Isobel, 15, died in April last year after taking the pills she found hidden in a wardrobe in Dodgeon’s bedroom.
An inquest into her death has been adjourned for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to decide whether to bring charges of gross negligence manslaughter against him and his partner, Westminster Coroner’s Court heard.
New evidence has been sent to the CPS that could lead to the pair facing an allegation of manslaughter.
Westminster Coroner Dr Fiona Wilcox said: “It is with an extremely heavy heart that I adjourn this case under the Coroners’ rules because in my view it is likely that a charge of gross negligence/manslaughter could be brought against either Mr Dodgeon or Miss Hadjipateras.
"The evidence when I reflected upon it is different to the evidence the CPS initially considered in relation to Mr Dodegon."
She added the couple’s request to family friend Camilla Mujica to be on standby while they were away was “inadequate at best”.
The former academic has already received an eight-month suspended sentence for drug possession and was told the “burden” of Isobel’s death would be the worst possible punishment.
Dodgeon, who described himself as an “old hippie” admitted four counts of possession after ecstasy, LSD, ketamine and a psychedelic drug known as Foxy Methoxy were found in his home.
He was also made the subject of a six-month curfew between 9pm and 7am and told to pay £150 costs.
Dodgeon, a research fellow at the University of London's Institute of Education, and Ms Hadjipateras went away for the night when Isobel died.
Dodgeon claimed he did not believe the teenagers would find his stash of drugs.
Yesterday, an inquest heard Isobel had urged friends not to call an ambulance after suffering an adverse reaction because she was afraid of getting into trouble.
Pathologist Dr Wilkins said it was impossible to say whether she might have been saved if paramedics had been called sooner after she suffered a shaking fit and was foaming at the mouth.
A boy, who cannot be named, told the court: “Issy took one of the pills out of the bag and was looking at it. People were discussing taking them. I was against it as we didn't know what they were.
“Around 3am she was breathing heavily. She was quite panicky. Her jaw was moving as well. I looked it up on the internet and thought it must be Ecstasy.
"She started to get really hot and sweaty and went upstairs to lay down. We said should we call an ambulance but Issy said no."